Back In Black | 21st Amendment Brewery

BA SCORE
83
good
2,399 Ratings
THE BROS
72
okay
Read the review
Back In BlackBack In Black
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
21st Amendment Brewery
California, United States
21st-amendment.com

Style: American Black Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV varies around 7%.
65 IBU

Added by tpd975 on 11-23-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
2,399
Reviews:
714
Avg:
3.68
pDev:
13.32%
 
 
Wants:
55
Gots:
399
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,399 |  Reviews: 714
Photo of tempest
3.65/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from can into a pint glass the beer was pitch black. At first it was a lovely pairing that came off like dry Irish stout with dry cocoa malts and classic American citrus hops. Unfortunately, as it warmed up during diner a less pleasant (though not bad) molasses flavor came forward. I'm digging the style, and it's worth checking out if you are too.

 356 characters

Photo of brandoman63
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Sweffin
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of outoffocus
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of WesWes
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark brown/black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a nice black and roasted malt scent along with a refreshingly bitter, citrus hop aroma. The taste is good. It has a killer, citrus hop bite up front laid over a bed of black and roasted malt flavors. It's dry and roasted with a fresh hop character that resinates in the finish. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking black IPA. The hop character is outstanding; very fresh and flavorful.

 573 characters

Photo of dar482
3.57/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The beer comes in a dark brown with a light brown head.

The aroma has grapefruit, pine, and some sweet roasted malt.

The flavor has lots of pine and herbal with a rounding roasted malt. The beer has a substantial malt backbone for a hoppy brew with a touch of roasted malt quality in there.

A reasonably well made black IPA.

 327 characters

Photo of tobelerone
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A high quality black IPA with a smoother, softer overall feel on draft than in the can. Carbonation is rounded off a bit, there’s some stickiness, and the body is very much right down the middle. Black and opaque with a small tan head that settles down slowly, leaving nice lacing. Aroma is lightly roasty but led by grapefruit hop notes. The flavor is a bit more balanced and less aggressively citrusy than I remember the can being. Definite grapefruit hoppiness with some piney notes but there is a higher degree of roastiness here than in many other black IPAs or “Cascadian Ales” or what-have-you. Finishes fairly dry with a bit of lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. If you like this style this is a solid example.

 729 characters

Photo of Whiskeydeez
3.55/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of AngusOg
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Mora2000
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to bman1113vr for sending me this beer.

The beer pours a dark brown to black color with a cream-colored head. The aroma is roasted malt and chocolate, with quite a bit of pine from the hops.

The flavor is bitter pine with some lightly roasted malt. I also get a touch of chocolate and maybe some coffee, but it is fairly faint. Low bitterness and the beer is very dry.

Thin, watery mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

 427 characters

Photo of plaid75
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured a deep black hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a resinous hop and roasted malt.

The taste consisted of a moderate hop spice with a residual roasted barley.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a nice black IPA. Could use a bit more hop presence.

 379 characters

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A black IPA from 21st Amendment brewing, California based craft brews in cans. Found this on tap, however.

Appearance: Black as night with a light khaki colored head. Could be confused with a Guinness to the untrained eye. The lace show is pretty fantastic, webs of bubbly foam coat the glass with each sip.

Smell: Floral hops and some toasty malt give the beer a solid nose.

Taste: A very mellow IPA, dark and lightly roasted. I would call this a hoppy schwarzbier since it has that type of malt backing. Piney hops add some bitterness, subtle grapefruit tinge. Mighty tasty.

Mouthfeel: A bit heavy on the palate but still goes down smooth and easy.

Drinkability: Hell yea! Fond of this one for sure, a nice hybrid of styles but still maintains the IPA feel.

 764 characters

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.08/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with a swirly head. Smells pretty light with some light citrusy hops, some light roastiness, and a touch of sweetness. The taste is a good deal more pronounced- this isn't a blow you away beer, but something about the nicely balanced creaminess, dry stout-like roastiness and gentle citrusy bitterness really works for me. I'm at the end of this six-pack, and this beer has really grown on me. Nicely creamy in the mouth and quite tasty. I like this better than I though I would.

 496 characters

Photo of BillRoth
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of flagmantho
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz can into a pint glass.

Appearance: extremely deep amber color, bordering on black. Plenty of red light is allowed through when held up to a light source. Head is one finger of fizzy tan foam which dissipates somewhat rapidly. It's not precisely black, nor at all IPA looking, but it's not bad.

Smell: somewhat chocolately roasted malt aroma with a bit of acidic sourness present. Hops are somewhat earthy and not especially prominent at this phase. This smells rather like an American porter.

Taste: plenty of sourness and a bit of the roast character remains. Hops seem slightly citrusy and slightly floral, with an earthy bitterness toward the end. The sourness dominates the beginning, though, with maltier flavors coming in toward the end. This is kind of a bizarre tasting beer which defies standard classifications; it's not too bad, though.

Mouthfeel: medium-light body with an OK level of carbonation. Nothing really exciting here.

Drinkability: not bad at all. The sourness does keep me coming back and I find this beer refreshing for all its weirdness. Made a pretty good tailgating beer yesterday as well.

 1,138 characters

Photo of enelson
3.94/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BARFLYB
4.01/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz CAN into a Lancaster Brewing pint glass late at night.

Back in Black pretty much sums up the color on this 21ster, a black body with some dark reds along the edges. A gorgeous light tan headf came up and stayed forever leaving nice sheets of lace.

A good balance of dark malts mixed in with citrus goodness from the hopping, pretty much even. A nice citrus blast of grapefruit and the like. Roasted malts and a semi storm kingish hop smell from the freshness.

Much more hoppy than I was expecting, again it reminds me of drinking a very lightly hopped storm king, or maybe an aged bottle of that. The roasted quality comes out as well as some sweetness. Pineapple and grapefruit and other citrus tastes. Looking at this beer, I was not expecting such a hop bite, quite nice.

Feel is mediumish and amply carbed up, the head last forever and this is some active beer here. Goes down smooth and citrusy and not very bitter as the darks really take away from that aspect. Very drinkable beer here and I would go for another in a second.

 1,041 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. can. Stamped Enjoy by 7/2/15. It is July 4, 2015. Hope it didn't go bad overnight.

Really dark brown pour under a full, tan head.

The aroma has some roasted malt sweetness but I also pick up something akin to roses. Maybe that is another way to define floral hops.

The body is about medium.

The hop bitterness kicks in more noticeably in the flavor after I get through those dark malt extracts. Mild bitterness at the end.

 447 characters

Photo of biegaman
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It'd be awfully disappointing if Back in Black were actually a dark, opaque brown - as American ales of this sort tend to be - but fortunately it's as black as soot (only against the light is it visible that its trim may actually have a little chestnut colour to it). Although not pristine white, its spongy head is light in colour and the coating provides a good contrast.

The aroma is certainly Pacific North-West caliber and packed with milk chocolate maltiness - in other words, textbook Cascadian Dark Ale. Neither much citrus nor coffee-ish roast registers but the pine-y hops practically seep tree resin into the nostrils while an almost cookie dough-like maltiness triggers the sweet tooth. There's also a chicory root note.

The hops have an acidic zest to them, resembling something like a piquant tomatillo salsa, and without much roast (and no acrid burnt taste) from the malts, that part savory/part spicy note lingers long into the aftertaste. The beer is otherwise milky sweet, however, and almost reminds me of a chocolate maltshake. There's not a hint of alcohol what so ever.

65 IBU isn't too great a bitterness that coffee-and-cream and spruce tip flavours can't be appreciated. Indeed, there is plenty of flavour to this otherwise quenching, easily quaffed beer including cookie dough, pine needles and broiled grapefruit. This thing has been more than adequately hopped: the finish contains chicory and cedar wood notes.

I'm aware that 21st Amendment have had some issues with their canning facilities in the past - that, to me, seems the only thing that might explain why this beer hasn't a higher rating. I may have been more favorable to other CDAs but I struggle to think of many others that I'd rather have locally available to buy frequently. This is one of my favourite 21A brew.

 1,814 characters

Photo of John_M
3.56/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Max's today.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with very good head retention and lacing. I'll say this, the beer looks impressive. The nose, however, I'm not loving so much. Although I get some noticeable peppery hop aroma, there's also something of a ginger and roasty malt aspect to the aroma profile. I get some cola as well. Flavors replicate the nose quite well, which is OK, but is not wowing me. Mouthfeel is light and almost a bit watery. Drinkability is likewise not all that impressive. Although the alcohol is pretty well disguised, the slight ginger flavor with the roasty malt just isn't a good combination for me.

Mehhh... While certainly not wretched, can't see any reason why I'd want to try this again.

 736 characters

Photo of wrightst
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Eziel
3.94/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Zorro
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark brown colored beer that appears black without back-lighting. Very small tan colored head.

Smells strongly of patent malt. Coffee and a little chocolate smell. Little bit of grapefruit hop scent but not much. All in all it smells like a Porter.

Starts out strong on the patent malt with a good amount of bitterness. Strong roasted grain flavor with an charred edge to it. Substantial bitterness at least as much from the malt as the hops. Hop type is had to determine, the hops have combined together to give this a taste that is best described as "Carrot Sticks."

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall an OK beer. It tastes stronger than it is. The taste is pretty much that of a Porter hopped to hell.

 706 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a blackish body with good head that receeds on the quick and leaves lace patches down glass. A mix of citric hops and some roasted malts, hint of sweetness...nothing stands out. A little sticky w/ a medium-to-heavy body and the roasted malts are prevelant as beer has a dryish edge. Soapy, citric hops w/ a little spice perk up and poke on the tongue for some good ol' IPA hops taste. The balance is OK but not perfect as I find the hops are muddled and not much sweet malt...just dry and touch of blandness as I drink. This is a good beer but a tad funky aftertaste and overall w/ beer I'm just left with an alright feeling.

 631 characters

Photo of fredmugs
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Back In Black from 21st Amendment Brewery
3.68 out of 5 based on 2,399 ratings.
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